Future Milwaukee Refugee Resettlement Office Operated by International Rescue Committee, Islamic Relief USA and Hanan Refugee Services Gains Approval


ALEXANDRIA, Va – An application for a refugee resettlement center in Milwaukee proposed by the International Rescue Committee (IRC) that will be operated/run by Islamic Relief USA, a non-profit humanitarian advocacy organization, and the city-based Hanan Refugees Relief Group, was approved by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM) and the state of Wisconsin.

The office will serve as a base for the Reception and Placement program. Hanan Refugees Relief Group, a longtime partner of IRUSA, has provided essential wraparound services to new arrivals in Milwaukee, helping them transition to their new surroundings through education, support service, housing and job-training programs.

Hanan officials are undergoing training provided by IRC, which will help them to provide high-quality, culturally appropriate resettlement services to their clients, with the most effective services and programs available.

The office, which is expected to open this summer, is slated to take in 100 new clients over a 12-month period. Technical assistance to both organizations is being provided by the IRC, whose stewardship in this process has been invaluable.

“We are pleased to see the approval of the refugee resettlement center by the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration,” said Sharif Aly, chief executive officer of Islamic Relief USA. “This is a crucial step in helping all the organizations involved provide the highest level of services and programs to some of the most vulnerable populations seeking help and safety from dire circumstances in their homelands. This center can help them toward a path of self sustainability and a bright future in their new surroundings. We look forward to fulfilling this mission.”

Executive Director Sheila Badwan of Hanan Refugees Relief Group states that her entire team is excited and grateful to receive the approval from PRM.

“After six years of grassroots organizing and community building, Hanan is honored to receive this approval to help welcome our newest Milwaukee neighbors. Hanan looks forward to working with Islamic Relief USA and IRC in this partnership.”

“Expanding resettlement services is a boon to the U.S., local communities, and, of course, refugees themselves. The new Milwaukee programs will enable more refugees to find home in the U.S. while supporting the local economy and increasing opportunities for Americans to get involved. We’re proud to work alongside IRUSA and Hanan Refugees Relief Group on this endeavor,” said Ellen Beattie, Acting Vice President of Program Excellence for the International Rescue Committee.

Officials from Milwaukee Public Schools, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families, as well as Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson, expressed support for the partnership. In a letter they signed on to, they wrote that the partnership “will add value to our community” and that they look forward to working with IRC and IRUSA staff and partners to support future residents.





Syed M. Hassan
mhassan@irusa.org  or
(571) 421-7032 (CELL)





Islamic Relief USA, based in Alexandria, Va., is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) humanitarian organization. Its mission is to provide relief and development in a dignified manner regardless of gender, race, or religion, and works to empower individuals in their communities and give them a voice in the world. Its programs benefit millions of people each year in more than 40 countries around the world, including in the United States.

Islamic Relief USA meets all of the Standards for Charity Accountability of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance, a national charity monitoring group affiliated with the Better Business Bureau system. Islamic Relief USA is on the U.S. government’s Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) charity list, and it is also a signatory to the code of conduct of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

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